Apple has released a Thunderbolt Firmware Update that addresses performance and stability issues on Thunderbolt-equipped MacBook Pros and iMacs.

The firmware update — a 468KB download — requires Mac OS X 10.6.8, and a Mac with a Thunderbolt port. The update is available via the Software Update component of the Mac OS X Systems Preferences app, or as a downloadable installer at the Apple Support website (

Running at 10Gbps, Thunderbolt technology can transfer a full-length HD movie in less than 30 seconds, according to Mooly Eden, general manager, PC Client Group, Intel. The vision for Thunderbolt technology (formerly codenamed “Light Peak”) is to move media faster, simplify connections between devices.

Combining high-speed data and HD video connections together onto a single cable is instrumental to achieving that vision, says Eden. Thunderbolt technology delivers this via two communications methods, or protocols — PCI Express for data transfer and DisplayPort for displays.

— Dennis Sellers